Editing DNS Settings
This document explains
What is DNS?
DNS can be considered something similar to a phone book.
When you move from one location to another, your name stays
the same, but your phone number may change. In order to point
your name to the new phone number, you must contact the
telephone service provider so they assign you the new phone
number and update all directory information to reflect you as
pointing to this new phone number.
In this way, the IP number can be compared to a phone
number: When someone calls http://www.example.com/, your ISP
looks at the DNS server, and asks "how do I contact example.com?" The DNS server responds: "It can be found at
22.214.171.124". As the Internet understands it, this can be
considered the phone number for the server, which houses the http://www.example.com web site.
The DNS records for your domain are kept on your hosting
server in the place called DNS zone. When you register a
domain by means of the control panel, all DNS records are
automatically created for you, but in some rare cases you may
need to add custom records to your DNS zone. An example would
be when you want all email to be processed by an external mail
server rather than by the built-in mail system. However, such
user intervention requires knowledge of DNS configuration and
clear understanding of what is to be done.
How Do I Create Custom DNS records?
To create a custom record to your DNS zone, do the
- Click Domains in your control panel home page.
- Select the domain if you have more than one.
- On the page that appears, click the
Edit icon in
the DNS Configuration field:
- This link will take you to the
On this page you can see several blocks of DNS records.
Some are built-in and non-removable; others are user-defined
and can be deleted. Built-in MX records require special
consideration: they can be removed by disabling mailservices
for this domain., but all email resources, including
mailboxes, forwarders, and autoresponders will also be
deleted. The removal of H-Sphere 2.x email services was made
possible to enable the use of email services provided by
other mail servers.
You can add any type of DNS records by clicking an
appropriate link. You will be asked to enter corresponding
Adding Custom A Records
Normally, A records are used to map domain names and web
If you have selected A record, the following page appears:
- Name: enter the string to map to the web server.
- TTL: set how many seconds will elapse before the
record is refreshed in the DNS cache.
- Data: enter the IP of the web server.
WARNING: Please pay attention to $ORIGIN when you add an A
Adding Custom MX Records
Custom MX records should be added when you want to use your external mail
servers to process your e-mail. To use your external servers instead of
those you get by default, you need to disable mail service on the Domain
Settings page of your control panel. To use the default mail servers in
addition to those you get by default, you need to keep mail service enabled in
the control panel. The priority of the custom MX record will define whether your
external servers will act as secondary or primary. For instance, if you set the
priority of the custom MX record higher than 10 (e.g. 11), your external mail
server will be used as secondary. If you set the priority of the custom MX record
lower than 10 (e.g. 9), your external mail server will be used as primary. In the
latter case, your mail will be sent to your external mail server until it goes
down or becomes otherwise inaccessible. Then the default mail server will take
When you enable mail service in the control panel, an MX record is created automatically in
the DNS zone. If mail service is disabled, this built-in MX record remains in the DNS zone,
and you can remove it manually using the control panel interface.
If you have selected MX record, the following page appears:
Name: your local domain name. If you
leave the Name field blank, all mail will be redirected for the base
Data: the priority of the record and
mail domain name (not the IP) mail will be forwarded to.
IMPORTANT: To add an MX record for the base domain, leave
the Name field empty.
Adding Custom CNAME Records
Finally, CNAME records are used to map aliases with domain
If you have selected CNAME record, the following page
Name: The alias you give to the real
TTL: set how many seconds will
elapse before the record is refreshed in the DNS cache.
Data: The real name of the host you
create an alias to. This must be an official host name. It cannot be an alias. A
CNAME-record should always point to an A-record to avoid circular references.
WARNING: Please pay attention to $ORIGIN when you
add a CNAME record.